17 December 2008


Blaise Pascal said in his Pensées, "Without diversion there is no joy; with diversion there is no sadness. That is what constitutes the happiness of persons of rank, for they have a number of people to divert them and the ability to keep themselves in this state."

Well Blaise, I don't have that ability because I'm too much of a loner. Why does it seem like I constantly have to reassess what makes me happy? This is why it took me so long to declare a major, or even understand what interests me. I'll never be satisfied. Does this make me unique? I don't feel so. I'm sure everybody struggles with unhappiness, but why does it not seem to frustrate them? I don't know what my problem is. I hate everything, but I don't hate anything. 

Why do I never feel like I fit in with people when I specifically want to? It makes me feel like there is something wrong with me, and doesn't help my self-confidence. Speaking of self-confidence, I am terribly insecure. I can never seem to tell what other people think of me, but somehow I tend to be spot-on when it comes to how they view themselves. And enough of this "I don't care what people think of me" attitude from everyone that is allegedly supposed to make us feel empowered or something. The "I don't give a fuck what you think" actually means "I care so much what you think that I have to repeat 'I don't give a fuck what you think' to myself as frequently as possible to make myself  believe it to be true." But honestly, two things-- first, we all care what others think. There's no getting around it. Not everyone will agree with this statement, but honestly, if you really don't care what others think, then you're probably just unimaginably self-centered and only don't think of other's views because you don't think of others at all. Secondly, isn't it important to care what other people think of you? If none of us cared what others thought, what would motivate us to do well in our workplace, take showers, or make any form of self-expression. The act of transmission inherently implies some form of reception. 

But insecurities aren't what I intended this post to be about. I just don't think I'll every be truly happy and it really bothers me that I don't know why. About half a year ago, I actually remember realizing that I was in a phase of my life where I was admittedly satisfied. All I did was read and work. I read books, wrote about them, and worked at Starbucks and made an income stable enough to be saving money while only meagerly leeching off of my parents. There wasn't much of a social life, but somehow it didn't bother me. Sometimes my social ineptitude really bothers me while other times I look at is as positive attribute that might come in handy. 

The most unfortunate thing of all is that I cannot deny the truth of what Pascal says, as much as I want to. I've always felt that I was probably unhappier because I can't stand to watch television and most movies seem consistently predictable. And because of that, I more frequently sit in self-reflection or read or get superiorly wasted and do dangerous things that I eventually regret. Is my personal lack of diversions the reason for my self-dissatisfaction? Is that really the answer? I seriously hope it isn't because that would mean that we are all fundamentally sad and hopeless. But I just can't bring myself to think of the answer as being any other way.

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